It’s Karaoke Night in The St. George. Andrea, Eddie, Asha and Kyle are ready to take a stand.   

The Ballad of St John’s Car Park was a sticky-floored tribute to the positive power of protest and standing up for what we believe in.

With spectacular projection, joyous dance and uplifting community song, The Ballad of St John’s Car Park told a unifying story about moments in Medway’s history that have been transformed by activism, from the protested closure of Chatham Dockyard in 1984 to the Black Lives Matter movement’s 2020 campaign to rename a local car park that commemorated a prominent slave trader.

This brand-new immersive theatre production was created and performed by a company of professional performers alongside 200 people from local communities, and young people supported by our Theatre31 programme.

After the show, the bar and karaoke stayed open for an inclusive community party where the audience performed their own karaoke songs.

Creative Team

Director: Nancy Hirst
Set and Costume Designer: Sarah Booth
Lighting Designer: Dan Terry
Projection Designer: Gino Ricardo Green
Composer and Sound Designer: Jonathan Vincent
Music Director: Tania Holland Williams
Choreographer: Grace Murdoch
Assistant Director: Joshua Miles
Assistant Music Director: Naomi Ash
Theatre31 Young Cast Director: Lily Vincent-Frankland
Theatre31 Young Cast Assistant: Molly Young
Costume Supervisor: Evelien Coleman
British Sign Language Interpreter: Becky Barry

The script was devised and written with David King-Yombo, Tabby Lamb, Harveen Mann ARAM, PK Taylor and Nancy Hirst. It was developed further through a collaborative process with Vaneeka Dadhria, Jaye Hudson, Ravneet Sehra, the community ensemble and Icon Theatre’s young people’s programme Theatre31.

Cast

Asha: Vaneeka Dadhria
Andrea: Jaye Hudson
Kyle: David King-Yombo
Eddie: PK Taylor

Nicole Dunn
Sonal Fricker
Karmel Goddard
Jade-Ashleigh Jeffrey
Pialy Mallik
Favor Nkelle

Production Team

Producer: Tania Holland Williams
Assistant Producer (Re:Generation 2031 Placement, Creative Estuary): George Simmonds
Production Manager: Ian Taylor (eStage)
Technical Manager: Pete Rickards (eStage)
Stage Manager: Jodie Jasmin Hicks
Assistant Stage Manager: Holly Glenn
Deputy Stage Manager: Fríða Frosta
Projection Programmer: Dan Bond
Lighting Technician: Gary Hoare
Sound Board Technician: Simon Foster
Participant ASM/DSM: Grace Hart
Production Management Placement: Lewis Champney
Set Builder: Joel Tozer
Production Assistant (Emerging Producer Placement Scheme): Samuel Fouch

Chaperones: Emie Andrews, Katrina Festorazzi, Ellen Fogarty, Jacqui Leppert, David Lloyd, Gemma Perkins, Laura Regan, Todd Revell, Anthony Walker, Francesca West

Artwork Design: Kate Burt
Photography: Roswitha Chesher

An Icon Theatre Production co-commissioned by Creative Estuary and Medway Council and supported by Arts Council England. The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport funds the Cultural Development Fund which is administered by Arts Council England. Icon Theatre’s young people’s programme Theatre31 is funded by Arts Council England in partnership with Medway Council, Kent County Council & ROH Bridge.

Tickets

£1, £5, £10 (no booking fee)

As part of our commitment to making theatre as accessible as possible, a limited number of £5 tickets are available for each performance on a first-come, first-serve basis. Standing tickets are available at £1 (you will be able to lean against a rail or similar).

Venue

The St George Hotel, 7-8 New Rd Ave, Chatham ME4 6BB. The entrance to the show is at the rear of the hotel in Gundulph Road.

Access Information

The venue is fully accessible. Wheelchair users and people with restricted mobility are requested to enter via the main reception of the hotel.

If you require a companion to attend the production, their ticket will be free. Please contact hello@icontheatre.org.uk or 01634 813179 to arrange this.

BSL-Interpreted Performances

Saturday 8 October, 2.30pm & 7.30pm
BSL-interpreted performances, delivered by an interpreter, give a sign interpretation of the text spoken and/or sung by artists in the production. If you wish to reserve a seat near the interpreter, please email hello@icontheatre.org.uk or call 01634 813179.

The Ballad of St John's Car Park in Numbers

1003

People Watch The Ballad of St John's Car Park

54

Freelancers Were Employed

102

Young People Participated

42

Young People Performed

'A stunning and incredibly moving show, the cast were diverse and brilliant - the writing and relevance to real life was genuine and heartfelt. This type of high quality and engaging performance in unusual spaces should be happening on a regular basis in Medway.'
— Audience Member
'A huge well done to a talented and phenomenal cast and creative team. I was genuinely moved, just beautiful. Thank you.'
— Audience Member
'The way the community members play an important role in the show is so unique and great to watch.'
— Audience Member
'This is the best of theatre. Entertaining, informative and thought provoking. The balance was really good. Well done Icon Theatre. I wish it could do a tour.'
— Audience Member
'This theatre was inclusive, challenging and brave. I love the combination of professionals and community performers and the diversity of the cast. It was fun and inspiring to be in the audience.'
— Audience Member

The Ballad of St John's Car Park Commissioners, Funders & Supporters

‘Icon Theatre has given me new friends, taught me new skills and challenged my lack of self-belief’
— Community Performer
'Icon has been ahead of the curve in understanding that the arts have a role to play in bringing people together, helping them be heard by telling their own stories in their own way, and in the process creating a sense of pride in place and space.'
— Lyn Gardner, Theatre Journalist
‘It has been lifechanging. Lady Unchained has helped get my life changed, I’ve started to look for opportunities on the outside, and see that there is life after prison.’
— Young Artist, Cookham Wood Young People’s Theatre Programme
'It helps you learn, it helps you grow and become more of what you want to become.'
— Ruby - Icon Youth Theatre (Medway)
★★★★ ‘A sharp, impeccably performed and blazingly impassioned piece of theatre…simply terrific.’
— The Times
78% of the participating young people said they were more confident and had more friends as a result of the project
— Six Ways To Wellbeing, young people's wellbeing project

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